The live Big Brother show went into disarray. Something terrible had happened. An intelligent political statement had taken place. Political conscience on trash reality TV? Heavens above. How shocking.
Merlin, the evictee, had taped his mouth and held up a sign saying "Release the refugees". He refused to participate in the trite chit-chat and bitchery which is the routine content of the weekly eviction show. He simply sat there with his rather tatty sign...and a massive audience.
Of course the Queensland rednecks in the live audience did their bit of booing and the cretin footballer in the house showed his disapproval. Dimwits united.
But it was a brave, brave use of a mass audience to communicate a serious message, shared by many of us.
The next night Merlin apologised for putting the show's glib host in a difficult position and he apologised for offending children in the audience. Eh? Children were offended by a humanitarian statement?
They are not offended by the sexual innuendo, the brainlessness and profanity of the show. They are not offended by a trans-sexual being sent into the house to flirt with the men? But they are offended by a gesture of compassion towards broken people detained in almost concentration camp-like circumstances?
Now that really is shocking.